State Health Officer: Ala. will temporarily pause J&J vaccine shots

State Health Officer: Ala. will temporarily pause J&J vaccine shots
(Source: WBRC)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris announced Tuesday, out of an abundance of caution, Alabama will temporarily pause Johnson & Johnson shots being given in the state.

Dr. Harris said he hopes the pause won’t keep people from getting the COVID vaccine.

Governor Ivey has issued the following statement.

From Governor Kay Ivey: “COVID-19 vaccine safety is a top priority for Alabama. It is important to know that the adverse effects potentially stemming from the Johnson & Johnson shot have been extremely rare in the country, but out of an abundance of caution, Alabama is temporarily pausing these shots until we know more. I commend Dr. Harris for taking this swift step in our state so that we can continue moving forward, getting shots in the arms and putting COVID-19 behind us once and for all.”

Harris, said the Alabama Department of Public Health has been monitoring the situation.

So far, no side effects from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been reported in Alabama.

Tuesday, April 13, the CDC and FDA announced they recommended a pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as they review data involving six reported U.S. cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot in individuals after receiving the J&J vaccine.

Dr. Harris said the six blood clot issues showed up about nine days after the vaccine was given.

Dr. Harris recommends doing your research before getting any vaccine and talking to your doctor to help you decide which one is best for you.

To date, 329 Alabama health care providers have received J&J COVID-19 vaccine, about one-third of the state’s vaccine providers. Of the 159,000 J&J doses received, 71,297 doses of J&J vaccine have been administered in Alabama. No known instances of a rare and severe type of blood clot have been reported in Alabama residents to date.

Harris said the state will now work to schedule appointments for first and second vaccines for folks who were signed up for J&J.

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